Living And Loving With No Strings Attached

by | Dec 17, 2015 | Love Others

I’d say we live in a prevalent conditional world.

“If you do this for me, then I’ll do that for you.”

“Her words ripped a hole in my heart. I can’t possibly forgive her.”

“He expects me to help him after what he did to me?”

“What’s in this for me?”

I don’t know if I experienced it as a young child, or if I figured out how to use it to create walls around my heart, but living conditionally was how I functioned for years.

Loving others was completely based on how others loved me.

If someone treated me nice, then I would reciprocate.

If another was mean to me, I was mean to him or her.

If someone hurt me, you can believe I held a grudge for nearly forever.

Call it stubborn, bullheaded, uncompassionate, selfish, or unloving.

I treated others the way they treated me.

You can imagine the internal difficulty I experienced when I happened upon a specific truth early in my faith…

This is what our Scriptures come to teach: in everything, in every circumstance, do to others as you would have them do to you. Matthew 7:12 (Voice)

What?? I’m to treat others how I want to be treated? Even if they aren’t nice to me? Even if I feel they don’t deserve it? Even when that person rubs me the wrong way? It has to

start with me??

Talk about a life-altering verse of scripture for this girl!To top it all off, even if I treated someone how I wanted to be treated, there was no guarantee that person would reciprocate. Living in this way—this-no-strings-attached way—was hard for me to swallow. I think I would have rather ate dirt.

no strings attached Β :: Β free of conditions, limitations; immeasurable; unending

I can’t remember my first few attempts of changing my behavior, but I’m sure they weren’t pretty. It’s not easy changing something you’ve done for so long, and something you’re good at… either right or wrong. But over time, after many failures, I began to understand living with no strings attached was less about me, and more about others. It was less about me, and more about Jesus.

Living with no strings attached allowed me to love others in ways Jesus loved me.

I’m thankful Jesus’ love isn’t dependent on what I do or don’t do. I’m grateful His love for me isn’t based on how much I love Him or how much I love others. My love could never compare to His.

We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19 NIV

“So I give you a new command: Love each other deeply and fully. Remember the ways that I have loved you, and demonstrate your love for others in those same ways.” John 13:34 VOICE

And as a bonus, when we live and love with no strings attached, we experience the beauty of God working through us in ways we couldn’t have experienced otherwise.

Living and loving with no strings attachedAnd doing so glorifies God.

Friend, what’s one way you can live and love with no strings attached today? To whom have we withheld forgiveness? Who could use a dose of Jesus’ love? Who can you and I treat in ways we want to be treated? What can we do for another without expecting anything in return?

No, I can’t say I live and love perfectly. I’m still a work in progress. But, even if we do it imperfectly, it’s better than not doing it at all.

I’m praying for each of us today. Thank you for being here, and for walking with me in this journey!

Much love,

Julie

 

 

Linking this post with Suzie Eller and friends for #livefreeThursday.

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10 Comments

  1. Being Woven

    Ouch! I have much waling with Christ to do and then be! But I am learning. This is a fine post and a serious reminder, Julie. FINE!

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Thank you, Linda. So thankful God continues to grow us. What a gift!! Bless you, friend.

      Reply
  2. Suzie Eller

    Gorgeous image and post. I love that you linked up with me today on #livefreeThursday!

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Thank you, Suzie. Thank you for hosting us at your place again! Blessings to you.

      Reply
  3. Darcy Jo

    A beautiful post, Julie! Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Thank you for stopping by! So glad you did, Darcy Jo. Bless you!

      Reply
  4. Kim

    Wow, the timing of this. I leave in 30 min. to head to a friends retirement party. I almost backed out of it because there is one individual attending who refuses to speak to me and one other person. (It is a small group and I didn’t want it to be awkward.) We have no idea what we said or did, but are both willing to support one another in still offering basic civil pleasantries to him. After speaking to our priest, we found out it really is not us, but this individuals issues, because he is also not talking to several other people. It hurts me because we had a friendship, but it mostly makes me sad, for him, that this is how he chooses to handle relationships. Your words are just confirmation for me that it is good to still be attending and to offer love and kindness in spite of his attitude.

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Kim, I pray the party went well. Thank you for sharing your circumstance. I’m glad you didn’t allow the awkwardness to stop you from going, and your attitude to offer love and kindness might have made more of a difference than you may realize now. Thank you, Kim for blessing me with your words!

      Reply
  5. sisterteresaofmenomonie

    Wow just what I am trying to explain to my 31 yr old son and 28 yr old daughter.

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      What a gift to have a mother who teaches such truths! Thank you for sharing and encouraging here. Bless you today!

      Reply

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